This news comes from the Boston Globe:
Senator John F. Kerry plans to announce today that he will not run in the 2008 presidential race, and will instead remain in Congress and seek reelection to his Senate seat next year, according to senior Democratic officials.
Kerry, a Massachusetts Democrat, plans to say he will remain in the Senate to recommit himself to efforts to extricate the United States from the war in Iraq. His decision to stay out of the presidential race reflects a realization that he would have had an uphill climb in capturing the Democratic nomination, given the other party heavyweights who are already in the race, according to the officials, who spoke to the Globe on condition of anonymity.
Kerry plans to make his plans known with a speech on the Senate floor this afternoon, and is taping a message to e-mail his supporters to explain his decision.
Kerry, the party’s 2004 presidential nominee, has been acting like a 2008 candidate virtually since he lost to President Bush — traveling the country, spreading money to other Democratic candidates, and keeping in place a campaign infrastructure that was ready for another presidential bid.
But according to Kerry associates, the senator’s plans changed dramatically in the fallout of his election-eve “botched joke” about the education levels of US troops. The harsh reaction to that incident — from many Democrats as well as Republicans — displayed to Kerry the extreme skepticism within his own party about whether he should mount another run.
I’m not sure if I buy that. I think it’s more likely that he’s not running because the Democratic field is becoming filled with much more capable candidates and he’d be trounced in the primaries. To be destroyed in the Democratic primary when he was his party’s nominee just a little over two years ago would be simply too much of an embarrassment.
Lorie adds: There are gonna be some Democrats celebrating today.
Update: Greg Tinti has the video of Kerry making his announcement.